Despite abstaining from a public endorsement of candidates seeking the Democratic nomination, President Obama has met with both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.
Mr. Obama spoke privately with Mr. Sanders most recently, although the White House declined to detail the subject matter of their conversations.
White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, whose appearance on Meet the Press revealed the president has greeted the Vermont senator and Hillary Clinton’s rival, said:
“He has seen Senator Sanders, both with the Senate Democratic Caucus and privately. And so, we’ll continue to do that. He’s obviously a leading senator in our caucus and we’ll continue to do just that.”
While McDonough avoided specifics of the meeting and attempted to portray the conversation as policy related, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest did explain the president was pleased with Mr. Sanders’ recent comments on gun control.
Speculation persists Mr. Obama is displeased with Sanders’ abiding by a 2005 House vote which grants immunity to gun manufacturers from lawsuits.
Sanders’ spokesman, Michael Briggs said:
“I hope you know that Senator Sanders has said he’d be willing to take another look at that legislation.”
[Reuters] [Politico] [Real Clear Politics] [Photo courtesy politicususa.com]